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Ipce Meeting 2008

1. First round

From Germany

In Germany, we have the AHS, Arbeitsgemeinschaft Humane Seksualität (Humane Sexuality Workgroup). Regrettably, there were an ex-prisoner and a journalist who told lies about the AHS. What followed was more or less a kind of political pressure, that resulted in the temporary closure of AHS's financial transactions and in the publication of the chairman's address. The chairman's telephone has been tapped, but without any consequences other than a constructive talk with police who are now convinced of the legality of the AHS. This is an indication of the social-political climate in Germany. It is difficult here but but not as bad as in the US and the UK. Laws and pratice make it possible to work on specific topics. 

The AHS has some self-help groups that work now under their own names, which makes them more difficult to find, but they still are working quite well. 

There is a great forum, Jungsforum, which makes it possible to express and share feelings and opinions, be it anonymous and virtually, but for many people it is the only way to escape feelings of isolation and extradition from society. Actually, however, people suspected of pedophile feelings are extradited from society. Openness is not possible. 

From Denmark

Peter Schmidt has published two books dealing with BL / GL. He was co-founder of the Danish Pedophile Group in 1984 within the Danish National Gay Organization LBL. One year later this group became the DPA born in 1985 independent of LBL. 

Peter: I'm a happily married man of some 16 years standing, with no primary Gay or BL orientation. This is in complete harmony with my conviction that every human being has, more or less, even if ever so microscopic, a bit of all sexual orientations in his or her personality. Nobody is totally foreign to any sexuality, all human beings have something in common. Not being primarily gay I nevertheless was extremely active in the Danish Gay Movement [1969-1985], especially fighting for gay rights at the work place and in Danish Trade Unions, in traditional party politics, plus cultural and political activism. 

During all these years sexual politics have been and still are at the core of my political and cultural interests. In my opinion, combating life negating ideology is, in the best meaning of that word, vital in making me a cultural activist, increasingly so, for every passing day.

I was the most active participant in the Danish “Kulturcaféen (Cultural Cafe). Among so many other debates we invited Dr. Gustav Henningsen, internationally recognized authority on the Spanish Inquisition, who, in addition to sitting in on our panel debate on witch hunting, showed us his own film on the phenomenon of the witch hunt historically as well as in modern times – he was, for instance, actually able to find persecutions of witches in the countryside of Denmark in modern times as late as into the 1960's – this astounded many that old fashioned real witch hunting in Denmark only recently disappeared - the last person to be persecuted as a witch died around 1965. 

A woman from the Danish Governments Central Administration, Signe Hemmingsen, spoke about false accusations and stigmatizing in today's day care centers. Another woman, a doctor from Sweden's Lund University, spoke about false accusations against people from Somalia living in Sweden. The panel discussion, in which miscarriages of justice by Denmark's courts, police and Ministry of Justice were vehemently criticized. 

Panel participants were:

Representative for Somalians living in Scandinavia, 
A. F. Dualeh. 
Dr. Gustav Henningsen, 
Ph.d. Agner Fog, 
dr. Sara Johnsdotter, researcher, social-anthropologist at Universitety of Lund in Sweden, 
Signe Hemmingsen from the Danish Governmental Central Administration,
philosophy historian and founder of the former Danish Minority Party Rune Engelbreth Larsen, and  
my self, Peter Schmidt, former member of the Minority Party´s Central Committee, author of “Whole and Free Kids” & "From Incest to Witch Hunts”.

Much of my knowledge of witch hunting stems from Sweden's most famous writer of non-fiction and fiction, Jan Guilliou, author of “Defenders of Witches”. In this book Guilliou states: 

“Hunting pedophiles is the witch hunt of the 21st Century”. 

Among Jan Guilliou´s personal friends is the King of Sweden. Guilliou himself is so important a public figure that journalists at Denmark's National TV station have declared Guilliou so influential that he himself has become an institution that no serious reviewer of books can ignore. 

I've reviewed his non-fiction work on historical witch hunting, culminating in the on-going horrors of the 20th and 21st Century. Guilliou has written an extensive chapter in mentioned book above depicting Denmark's National hero and icon King Christian the 4th´s witch hunting activities as the most numerous and misanthropic in Northern Europe in the years 1600-1648.

Today Denmark is the only country in the world that still celebrates witch hunting with ritual bon fires burning witches in effigy every 23rd of July on the eve of Saint Hans Day (= John the Baptist Day). Historically, Denmark's greatest witch hunter is the monster, serial killer King Christian the 4th, celebrated as the “Renaissance” King. 

Because of this we political cultural activists organized a counter festival proclaiming "The Rescue of the Witches", in which the gay movement participated. We have also distributed posters against King Christian the 4th and against homophobia. Today it is no longer comme il faut to burn witches in Denmark. That is one method used to combat life negating ideologies. 

For some years we had the DPA group, now it exists only as a website. For a long time to come it won't be possible to start and maintain such a group. What is possible, is starting discussions on the Internet. Maybe there is a future in the diverse forms of communication over the Internet. In other countries around the world there are other and more possibilities.

From the UK

Also in the UK, such groups no longer exist, only small informal groups. Public action is not possible, only action to help each other at the individual and small group level. 

After the infiltration by a UK police officer during our meeting in Hamburg, 2004, the same officer has continued his activities in informal contacts in the UK until the start of 2006. Then, six people were raided, among whom were three Ipce members. Just one of these three was arrested. The accusations were possessing and distributing child pornography. In one case, this was a pitiful set up by police, in a second case, it concerned images taken from the public tv. They are free again now, be it under restriction. In one of these cases, police informed the neighbourhood, so the person had to move home. In the UK, such information is not public, but may be selectively given. In the US, police have to inform the neighbourhood. (In the Netherlands, this is illegal, but it happens occasionally.)

There has been a lot of publicity about a children's home in the island of Jersey basing itself on police reports, making statements without any proof. The problem is the great exaggeration. They found bones and teeth ... of animals, shackles ... for animals, and a 'skull' that appeared to be a coconut. The news items appear on the front page, the corrections later on buried on page 19 in a corner of the newspaper. There are more such cases. 

The laws change here every one or two years. Punishable now, for example, are some acts in foreign countries, that are legal in that country, but not in the UK. Here in the UK, we do not see any influence from the liberalization of laws in Europe, but much influence from the USA. And we see influence from the UK on laws in Europe. 

An example is a love affair between a German boy and English girl, happening in Turkey. Germany wanted to free the boy, the UK and Turkey both wanted to prosecute him. Germany has won the battle. 

In the UK, police have actively searched for victims or 'victims' of child sexual abuse, for example by writing a letter to all former inhabitants of children's homes, offering them financial compensation for an allegation. Victims came forward, but supposedly far more 'victims' who wanted the compensation. This practice has now been stopped. 

Three guests from the UK

They, quite young people, have been invited. They entered the meeting as a guests, they have left the meeting as new members.

Correct information is important, but difficult to publish. For example, there has been a website about innocent people harmed by Operation Ore  
( < http://www.inquisition21.com/ >) This website was once censored by Google and its host, but it is back online and is now listed by Google. More recently, two associates of the website were arrested for "conspiracy to possess indecent images of children", for copying a hard drive containing "indecent images" to be used in a court action. The police had actually given them permission to do this; it all seems like a police setup. See  
< http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/09/17/ore_bates_arrest/  > and 
< http://www.inquisition21.com/index.php?module=announce&ANN_user_op=view&ANN_id=358 >.

Many media use censorship, mostly after a complaint from a citizen, sometimes because the rules of governments who limit free speech. In the UK, most people accept those limitations, and most providers use censorship for commercial motives. They cave in. In the USA, there is more resistance, for example by Amazon. Amazon also operates in the UK, where it also sells controversial texts.

Thus, some of us have established our own website < http://newgon.com/ > to spread factually correct information, and a private forum to discuss matters and to create correct information through doing research and by using a Wiki-like model of working. 

"I disagree with their goal of complete abolition of the AoC; I think something similar to the old Dutch law would be more appropriate. In my opinion, the law needs to find a balance between preventing sexually mature people engaging in sexual activity with people who haven't yet reached the necessary level of sexual maturity, while ensuring that people who have reached a necessary level of sexual maturity don't suffer from negative socio-legal reactions as a result of their activities. I personally do not support sex between an adult and a pre-pubescent child - for a variety of psycho/socio/legal reasons - though I am happy to hear alternative arguments."

Some of us run the website www.attractedtochildren.org  (formerly anu.nfshost.com - now not reachable) along with others. The website will soon be redesigned to host a number of academic texts in a more appropriate format and will also operate a blogging/social network for boylovers and girllovers.

We want to fight against criminalization of love affairs. We intend to spread legal information. Our forum can be a basis for real contact for people who now feel lonely in front of their screen. Our wish is to work on an academic level. To do this, a kind of organization is needed, thus organizers - and time. 

From the USA

Spreading Information is OK, but it is not the best way to influence people. Narratives are a better means of reaching people's hearts and minds. People know only the bad stories. Thus, I am working on a film with a good story. That is my way to fight against false ideologies. The script is ready. Now I have to find a financier and producer, who has to find the players, including a junior player.  

From the Netherlands

OK, perhaps images may also reach people's hearts and minds. Thus, the magazine Koinos is working on a photo book. 

In the 80's, we had influence using our groups, for example to change the law for youth between twelve and sixteen years of age. The law changed: in that age group prosecution became only possible if there is a formal complaint. Regrettably, that law has been abolished now because of problems that young female prostitutes had, but more by influence of feminists and foreign states as the UK and the US - and a conference in Stockholm. 

Here in the Netherlands, we have a small political party, PNVD, with a broad program, including more freedom for speech, images and real love affairs, also for youth. However, the social-political climate here is strongly against this party and its program. 

Here, we have a very prosperous state, but remarkably lots of people are always grumbling and complaining, not always politely. This section of our society admires populist politicians such as Geert Wilders, well known for his anti-Islam film fitna. Such politicians are on the right wing as well on the left wing. It is not the best climate for subtle shades of opinion.

Concerning positive and free intergenerational relationships, we still have some good working groups here. They will present themselves during the session on Sunday afternoon. And we have two women, named Ireen and Yvonne, fighting against the same groups, albeit without too much success.

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